APR: your source for nuclear news and analysis since April 16, 2010

Monday, March 21, 2011

Smoke from No. 3 plant

Apparently at 4:30 PM or so local time TEPCO informed N&ISA of gray smoke coming from the No. 3 plant at Fukushima Daiichi. This looks like it's not steam, but smoke and started at about 3:55 PM. TEPCO has evacuated its workers from the area.


4:00 AM Eastern Monday 3/21

Update, 4:10 AM- This story is out on the wires now and TEPCO has made a very brief statement including the note that the amount of the smoke seems to be reducing and that fire authorities have been notified. Still developing; source of smoke not yet clear at all.

1 comment:

  1. Hello,

    while looking for qualified assesment on the developments in Fukushima, I found your blog.
    Since wednesday last week I'm wondering, what's going on with reactor 3. That it contains the most danger with its MOX-fuel, was obvious (the spent fuel pools also were dangerous, but comparatively easy to contain with waterspraying).

    What do we know now about the interior of this reactor?
    I assume, its inaccessable since its contamination and also the Tepco people maybe know little more, then we: the monitoring sensors and equipment will be mostly out of function.
    If there has been any cooling seems to me a conundrum: the status report says "yes"; but no report of some effort of pumping seawater and like that since wednesday last week and also none of venting.
    I understand, they avoid venting, since if they do, it will not happen without maybe serious amounts of plutonium getting out.

    I think, it may even be the (worst) case, that there happened a full meltdown with the melting fuel leaving the containment.
    If so: what would be the signs of that?
    I think, in this case - the melted fuel leaving through the bottom - there might be still pressure at the vessels / the containment building up from beneath, dependent on the construction of the reactors bottom containment.
    I was missing information on the amount of the pressure; think its a difference, if 0,01 psi or 100 increasing / decreasing.

    Since there seems to be no option of accessing the reactor and supposedly all monitoring and measuring broken, after heat, burning, heavy radiation and lately water from above running through cracks of the containment I think there just remains a serious game of speculation whats going on by analyzing some hints the reactor is sending to the outside.

    I'd like to know: whats your assessment on this situation?

    PS: when looking at the photo / footage of the reactor, I doubt, if the spent fuel pool isn't damaged, causing an additional issue..